Monday, May 15, 2017

Vintage Floral Wrap Dress from schneidernmeistern

This is the new 'noch ein Wickelkleid, bitte' wrap dress sewing pattern by schneidrenmeistren. This is the same designer who brought the Karl Dress into the world. She has a talent for making a strong statement that is also completely wearable. This wrap dress is a classic knit wrap dress that is knee length, and has 4 sleeve options. I'm wearing mine tied snuggly at my natural waist, but Monika and the other sewists on the 'notch win Wickelkleid, bitte' blog tour (list at end of post) have some way cooler styling suggestions for those looking for a more laid back urban vibe, or layered look. 
Monika kindly gave me this pattern to sew as I like. In this case what I like, is not my normal chambray, or linen. It would seem that is you're looking for consistency, you've come to the wrong place. This is my muslin, made with a miserable vintage polyester knit. I promise you, I have a characteristically reserved ponte variegated gray knit picked out for this little number, that was well within the typical SweetKM color palette. I took this vintage floral out of the "donate" pile on the sewing room floor so I could confirm fit and construction method before I cut into the good stuff. But every time I tried on the muslin, I liked it more, and more (looks great sleeveless, too!).

I initially hated this fabric. I bought it on Etsy a few months ago intending to make a 90's inspired flowing midi dress. It was miserably photographed to appear to be on a black background, and was described as a cotton blend with nice drape. Neither of those things are true. This is 100% spun plastic. If I stand too near a flame, or sit in a hot car I'm pretty sure this dress will shrink wrap to my body. It doesn't breathe, you can't iron it, it is likely to give me a rash. The fabric has a bit of stretch, but the ground and the print are screen printed on, so when it's stretched you can see the white polyester substrate between the rows of knit. Luckily, the flexible fit of a wrap dress minimizes the need for the dress to stretch that far. With all of these shortcomings the antique pink flowers make this feminine design just as romantic as I want it to be. I feel pretty, even in brown polyester! 

Honestly, I think the great fit of the dress is what turned my opinion of the fabric. It's still crap, but well fitting crap somehow looks good. I'm going to initiate a new rule of thumb, similar to no white after Labor Day. You can use a bad fabric on a well fitting dress, but must use good fabric for a poorly fitting dress. Now, we can all go forth and start flouting that rule. 
Based on my bust measurement I made a straight size 38. Unlike any RTW wrap dress I've ever worn my chest is safe from wardrobe malfunctions making a camisole optional. I normally grade up a size or two at the hips, but the flare of the skirt makes up for my curves. I love the close sleeve and arm opening. This is the 3/4 length sleeve option. I made two tiny changes to Monika's original design. I doubled the thickness of the ties to add to the vintage feel of the fabric. I also doubled the width of the neck edge band. As with most European patterns seam allowances are not included. I knew this, but still forgot to add it to the neck opening. I added it back with the width of the edge band. The open edge of the skirt has a built in facing that makes a really nice finish at the end of the neck edge banding.

Is there a woman alive who doesn't look good in a wrap dress? It's the perfect cure for my pear-shaped affliction. And, so comfortable I never want to take it off. I've been wondering what I'm going to do with that "good" fabric I never cut into, but I suspect it will end up as another 'noch ein Wickelkleid, bitte'!
Quick Links:
- Get the Pattern: 'noch ein Wickelkleid, bitte' wrap dress (it's 15% off during the blog tour!)
- Read Monika's description on her blog
- Check out the hashtag #nocheinwickelkleidbitte on instagram.


  1. Ooh, mislabeled poly is a big pet peeve of mine! That said, the dress does look great on you. I do hope it doesn't melt all over you in the sun; that would be awful.

    1. Ha! Of course, I'm being dramatic. I really love the style!

  2. Despite the poly imposition it really is fabulous on you, I agree wraps for all women! Look forward to your next version - I've a sleeveless wrap dress I made a couple of years ago and wear it a lot in summer.

    1. I was thinking sleeveless too. I wear my Alder Shirtdresses a ton in the summer, but some knit dresses would be a good addition to my summer uniform.

  3. A really fun read and a beautiful dress! Love the nostalgic florals AND your new rule!
    Thank you so much for participating in the tour!

    1. Thanks for inviting me! It's fun to see what all the different sewists are doing with your design!

  4. Waauw, I love your version!! This is soo goodlooking and you are totally right about how flattering this is to pear-shaped figures (as I am too ;-)). It's absolutely perfect on you!

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